Meet Lia Chen: Library Student Assistant for Outreach

At the William H. Hannon Library, the Outreach Department consists of four full-time employees and six library student assistants. Currently, our most senior student employee is Lia Chen. We recently sat down with Lia to ask her a few questions.

1. Where are you and your family from?

I was born and grew up in Irvine, California. My family is Taiwanese, but my parents grew up outside of Taiwan; my mom in Brazil, Colombia, and Panama and my dad in Japan and Jordan.

2. Hobbies?

I enjoy cooking and baking as well as hiking and camping. I also spend a lot of time planning and journaling.

3. Favorite eats?

My favorite categories of food would be Italian and Thai food. The restaurants I most frequent are Chipotle, Celadon Thai, and Urban Plates. But, above everything I am a huge dessert person and love Pinkberry, Salt and Straw, Van Leeuwen, and Crumbl.

4. Why did you choose LMU?

I chose LMU because the first time I toured, I absolutely fell in love with the campus. I liked that it was a smaller university, where my classes feel more personal. Also, I was drawn to how service is a fundamental part of LMU.

5. Why did you choose elementary education as your major?

Since being a kid, I had always looked up to my teachers which led to teaching being my dream job. It has stuck with me throughout the years as I experienced being around the young through tutoring and babysitting. I believe there is such a huge need and demand for “good” teachers, especially because teachers have a responsibility to contribute, form, and create the future thinkers of the world.

6. Why did you add environmental studies as a second major?

I wanted to expand my knowledge on what I believe to be a topic that will affect every single person in the coming years. I was initially interested in studying the environment from the AP environmental science class I took in high school. Although it has added to my workload, I am really grateful for adding this as a major because I am learning a lot more!

7. If you could wave a magic wand and make your life perfect, what would your career look like after LMU?

If money wasn’t an issue, I would travel the world and take in as much knowledge as I could. Then, I would design, build, and start an eco-school where students would be learning in outdoor environments and the classroom curriculum would be student-driven.

8. What are you involved with on campus?

I am the cice president of BALI Club, where we fundraise to build and sustain learning centers in Bali, Indonesia with the leadership from local Balinese people. I am also an Alternative Breaks Trip leader through the Pam Rector Center for Service and Action. I am a member of the Creare Service Organization, where I volunteer at ALMA Backyard Farms. And, I work for the best office and team on campus: library events and outreach!

9. How has your time been at LMU? Anything particularly challenging?

I have really enjoyed my years at LMU, specifically because of what I am involved with outside of classes; I have also enjoyed and appreciated the majority of my classes and professors and being in a learning, supportive environment. The most challenging time was when I had to move out of my first-year dorm due to COVID with the unknown of when I would see my friends (nearly all out of state and international) again.

10. Do you have any advice for new students?

Get involved and find a supportive community! LMU life is so much more enjoyable and fulfilling when you are a part of something you love!